Monday, January 24, 2011
The telephone is ringing
So Saturday morning I'm enjoying my cup of coffee, it's lightly snowing outside and I'm just hatching, you know, slowly waking up, pushing out the sides of my sleep shell and at peace. (my sister was the was to coin the phrase "hatching" and I just love that idea) In my solitude, staring off in the distance, my phone rings. It's my son...now it's early and it is Saturday morning, he does NOT call me on early Saturday mornings...it's 10am, what is he doing up? OMG...I hope nothings happened. I answer.
This is a re-cap of what I hear..."Hey mom, I just finished reading your blog. Why didn't you ever make me a Croquenbouche? I want one. All your stuff's about Madison." (he didn't SAY that but that's what he was saying) I was in shock! Not that he was already awake and up, not that he called me on a Saturday morning to talk, but that he read my blog!!! So bear with me, my dear readers, I'd like to tell you a story about my son.
One of my favorite “Miles” stories my make cry every time I think about it. In second grade Miles was in Cub Scouts and the biggest event of the Cub Year is always the Pine Wood Derby. This year would be no exception. As this was the first Pine Wood Derby Miles was ever in, we took it very seriously. The instructions were very clear that the CUB SCOUT WAS TO CREATE THE CAR BY HIMSELF. Parents could “help” with tools and supervise but they were not to take this as a project for themselves.
Miles was given the wood block, tires on an axle and the kit stickers. He decided that he wanted to use blue shiny paint and we’d glue a quarter on the bottom to help it go faster! His dad set up an area so he could paint it and allow it to dry before he put the stickers on the car. The first coat of paint was not enough so Miles wanted to paint it again. He put the second coat on but didn’t wait long enough for it to thoroughly dry before he place the stickers and that lead to a few places that were sorta smudged. But Miles liked it and told both my husband and me that “He was gonna WIN!”
Off to Derby Day! We all were excited to get there and had much anticipation for how this was going to progress. The winners got to go to the Regional Derby and we wanted to go. Lots of families were in the gym and the place was buzzing with excitement. As I started to look around and see the other cars, my stomach dropped to my feet. Every car I saw looked as if NASCAR had made them. One car was dipped in gold and planed down so far the front end was paper thin. Another car was obviously professionally painted and then sealed with some plastic coating. I felt like the worst mother in the world. Why hadn’t I just taken the car and had it worked on by a professional body restorer? What was I thinking? I couldn’t look at Miles. He was seeing the same thing I was and his eyes were so sad. But I reassured him that we weren’t even on the track yet. His would be so fast…the paint jobs wouldn’t help those cars. Then I saw the bottoms of some of the cars. Oh My GOD!!! People had drilled the bottoms of the cars and put in lead weights, poured metals into sockets they had drilled out and had sealed bottoms with stripes and decals. Miles was crushed. I walked outside and started crying. Another den mother came out and told me not to worry about it and said that it was “very sweet” how Miles car looked. I just shook my head and told her to leave me alone and then my husband came out and said Miles car was ready to race. I pulled myself together and went inside to watch Miles car.
They place they cars up on the top of the ramp and then the car rolls down the ramp and the first car across the finish line wins that heat. In the first heat, Miles car stopped in the middle of the ramp and didn’t even cross the finish line. In the second heat, the car made it to end, in last place. Miles looked so defeated I couldn’t help but start crying again. My husband pulled me aside and told me I had to stop it because it was making Miles feel worse. The final heat came and went and the car finished last again. We weren’t going to the Regional’s. My heart went out to my son and I was so mad with myself, I couldn’t even talk.
The award ceremony was next and we watched as all the winners walked up to receive their trophies and accolades. All of the boys were friends with Miles and they all were excited to get their trophies. I smiled at Miles and tried to reassure him that we would do better next year and Miles just looked down, trying to fight back tears and told me that he didn’t want to do this next year. As I sat, waiting for this terrible day to finish, the race director came to the podium. “I have the honor of giving the Pine Wood Derby’s top award. This award is given every year to the car that most closely represents the values and traditions of the Cub Scout organization. The award is for Best Design and the winner of this title will go on to the Regional Pine Wood Derby. The winner of Best Design is …(wait for it) MILES GRIFO! It is obvious to all the judges that Miles did this car by himself. He followed the rules of the contest. He showed that even though his car may not have been the fastest car, it was totally his car. No parents did this; he did it on his own. For that, he highly deserves this award!”
No shocker…I started really crying this time as I watched my son walk up and get his trophy. Everyone stood up and clapped for him. When he turned around, the smile on his face was the brightest thing I have ever seen. Maybe he should have gone into engineering! LOL
Hope that wasn't too painful. I am constantly amazed at how much love we can carry. I remember worrying that I wouldn't be able to love another baby as much as I loved my first...but the second, and I mean the very first second that I looked at him laying on my chest in the hospital, my heart doubled. It filled and flooded my entire being. I was like the Grinch...my heart grew 3x's that day!
This world is full of wonder. I hope you are too.
Peace out my fellow explorers! Be amazed!